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Teaching and Diversity: Meeting the Challenges for Innovative Teacher Assessments

Dwyer, Carol A.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Report
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Praxis Series, Teacher Certification, Teacher Evaluation, Test Construction, Test Fairness


(11pp.) This article describes how ETS staff and associates addressed equity and diversity in the development of The Praxis Series: Professional Assessments for Beginning Teachers. This process included: 1) articulation of a conception of teaching and learning, with emphasis on equity and diversity; 2) creation of performance assessment criteria that validly and fairly represent the complexity of teaching and avoid prescription of one right way to teach; and 3) development of a system for training local educators as assessors. Three guiding principles regarding diversity and equity followed in developing the Praxis III are that teacher assessments should: 1) respect the complexity of teaching and learning; 2) contribute to the equitable treatment of all teachers and students; and 3) contribute to the professionalization of teaching. The framework for teacher assessment used in Praxis III describes four broad domains which are described briefly here and summarized in a table along with examples of the infusion of culturally-responsive pedagogy. The author notes that although alternative forms of testing are generally assumed to be less biased than M-C tests, it remains to be seen whether these new forms of assessment will actually meet the expectations of fairness to minorities. (JGL)

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